Introduced in 2018, the A. Lange & Söhne TRIPLE SPLIT is the world’s only mechanical split-seconds chronograph that allows the measurement of intermediate and reference times for durations of up to twelve hours.
The former edition in white gold with a grey dial is now followed by a second version – also in a limited edition of 100 timepieces – in pink gold with a blue dial and rhodié-coloured subsidiary dials. Despite the wealth of displayed information, an ingenious material and colour concept make it easy to clearly assign each of the ten hands to a specific function.
The TRIPLE SPLIT is a logical evolution of the DOUBLE SPLIT introduced by A. Lange & Söhne in 2004. With a precisely jumping rattrapante minute counter, it represents an impressive milestone in the development of modern rattrapante mechanisms conceived by the Saxon watchmakers.
Stopping times of up to twelve hours is possible with the TRIPLE SPLIT. The extension of the rattrapante function to the hour counter offers a multitude of further possibilities. For instance, the TRIPLE SPLIT can compare the times of two opponents in a Formula One race, a Tour de France stage, or a marathon. It is also possible to stop the times of consecutively starting events or add together the times of multiple-hour events such as the duration of the individual Ironman disciplines. Any number of lap times can be stopped during additive time measurements.
In the starting position, the three rhodiumed rattrapante hands are superposed on the respective chronograph hands. The time measurement is started by pressing the chronograph pusher at 2 o’clock. The pairs of hands now run synchronously until they are separated by pressing the rattrapante pusher at 10 o’clock to perform a lap-time measurement.
The three rhodiumed hands will then stop to display the lap time. All the while, the previously concealed chronograph hands in gold-plated steel or pink gold continue the time measurement. As soon as the rattrapante pusher is pressed again, the rattrapante hands catch up with the chronograph hands and from then on run together with them again.
The movement is also endowed with a flyback function that involves all three hand pairs as well. Thus, the chronograph can be reset to zero by pressing the chronograph pusher at 4 o’clock during an ongoing time measurement. Releasing the pusher instantly starts a new time measurement.
The Lange calibre L132.1 is a movement that stands out with its three-dimensionality, complexity, and architecturally pleasing design. It highlights the finissage that is typical of the individual Lange components. Overall, 567 tiny parts are perfectly adjusted for flawless interaction.
The creation of a mechanism which makes it possible to collectively or separately control three hand pairs represented a formidable technical challenge for Lange’s developers. Even a simple rattrapante mechanism has two hands attached to arbors that run one inside the other. In the calibre L132.1, this pairing exists three times. During the assembly of the movement, the multiple function axes call for the utmost precision and virtuosity.
A glance through the sapphire-crystal caseback reveals the chronograph movement that is finished to the strictest Lange standards and adjusted to assure the perfect interaction of column wheels, clutches, rockers, levers, springs, and jumpers. Five gold chatons, traditionally secured with screws on bridges decorated with Glashütte ribbing as well as the hand-engraved balance cock round off the stylish prominence of the movement.